Columb Barracks is said to be quite a haunted place. One ghost is that of a soldier who still marches up and down between the barracks gate and the Fair Green on an endless last patrol. Strange figures have been seen and the English/Scottish accents of long departed British soldiers have been heard in some of the old accomodation blocks. In 1923,a group of soldiers in a room at the top of Block “D” endured a night of unspeakable terror” when a white figure appeared and advanced towards one soldier’s bed. The “visitor from the other world” leaned over the soldier. Blankets were thrown at the figure but just went through it. Not until the screams of the man in the bed led other soldiers to rush into the room and switch on lights did the ghost “take himself across the divide from whence he came.
The Phantom Army On an October night in 1686, people ran in panic to the home of the Constable of Mullingar, crying out that the town was being invaded and that soldiers were marching four abreast across the River Brosna at a place called The Friars Mill. at the bottom of Mill Rd. Upwards of 400 soldiers were said to be on horseback with muskets in their hands. The Constable rallied his men and went forth but “could find no trace of these apparitions.” An inquiry was held into the “invasion”,with witnesses declaring that they had seen hundreds of soldiers and denying that what they had seen were “fairy horses.” because such horses would only have been seen by one man. The Inquiry board concluded that mass hysteria was the cause of the apparitions. The event also occurred around Halloween. But just three years later, Mullingar was invaded by the Williamite Army before the Battle of the Boyne. Perhaps what people saw that night was the opening of a time portal-allowing a glimpse into the future. Mullingar may be the only town to have been invaded by an entire army of ghosts.